A senator is accused of inciting officers who want the defence chief sacked Trouble appears to be brewing again in the ranks of the Philippine military, with a group of officers demanding higher hazard pay, better housing, and the ousting of Defence Secretary Angelo Reyes. The dissatisfaction comes on top of reported factionalism within the police force which has been partly blamed for the escape of suspected terrorist Fathur Rohman al-Ghozi and two Abu Sayyaf members from the national police headquarters last Monday. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, the armed forces commander-in-chief, confirmed reports of restiveness among army and marine officers after summoning senior officers to the presidential palace to shed light on the matter. But a military officer in the defence department said the reports 'appear to be linked more to politics than to military affairs'. He said the grievances have long been known and are being addressed, with the Philippine Congress rushing the approval of additional benefits for soldiers. The officer pointed out that Senator Gregorio Honasan - a former lieutenant-colonel who allegedly led at least nine coup attempts over a decade ago - has admitted to acting as an 'adviser' to the dissenting officers. Senator Honasan said he had met the complaining officers, and he found their points were valid, but he had urged them to use the 'peaceful and legal route'. Mr Reyes, a former military chief, denies accusations that he is micro-managing the military. He also accused Senator Honasan of 'agitating' the officers for his own benefit. Senator Honasan has announced he will run for president next year, and Mr Reyes is believed to be eyeing a senate seat. 'It seems their real target is Reyes,' the defence official said. 'There is definitely a group of dissatisfied soldiers ... there always is at least one. But how many they are, or whether they will have widespread support if they try something - I don't think so.' Nonetheless, Mrs Arroyo was not taking any chances. 'I support any legitimate grievances of the young officers in the armed forces and I urge them to resolve these responsibly through the chain of command,' she said. She ordered General Narciso Abaya, the armed forces' chief-of-staff, 'to institutionalise a grievance mechanism' and keep her informed. Senator Rodolfo Biazon, also a former military chief, said the complaints were 'old but valid issues'. Most of the dissatisfied soldiers are reportedly field commanders, with the rank of captain and major. No single officer has emerged as a spokesman for the group, which calls itself the 'Concerned Army Officers of Sulu'. Mr Biazon said Mr Reyes should be sacked because 'he has been micro-managing the military for a long time'. He said officers blame Mr Reyes for the Lamitan fiasco two years ago, when a group of Abu Sayyaf bandits and hostages escaped from a hospital besieged by the military after some troops were pulled out.